Dr. Shannon O'Brien Wilder has served as the founding director of the Office of Service-Learning (OSL) at the University of Georgia since 2005 where she provides leadership for the expansion of academic service-learning opportunities both locally and in study abroad. In this role, she coordinates the OSL’s Service-Learning Fellows program, and oversees programs and initiatives related to faculty and graduate student development, grants and funding for service-learning, faculty awards and recognition programs, and university initiatives promoting community engagement. Prior to leading the OSL, she worked in UGA’s Office of Instructional Support & Development (now the Center for Teaching and Learning) from 2000-2005, and in Cooperative Extension from 1995-2000. She received her BFA from Baylor University in Waco, Texas. She holds a M.Ed. in instructional technology (2001) and a Ph.D. in art education (2006), both from the University of Georgia.
In addition to her administrative duties, Shannon serves as an adjunct faculty member in the Department of Art Education in the Lamar Dodd School of Art where she has developed and taught the graduate course Art Education in the Community as well as a First Year Odyssey service-learning course, ‘Citizen Artists’ and the Role of the Arts in Public Life. In addition, she has co-taught GRSC 78070S: Service-Learning Course Design. She currently serves as the co-editor for the Journal of Higher Education Outreach and Engagement (JHEOE). Her current research interests include the impact of service-learning on students’ civic participation after graduation, arts-based research methods, and service-learning and arts-based reflection. Her research has been published in journals such as the International Journal of Education and the Arts.
Shannon was selected as a 2008-2009 Education Policy Fellow by the Georgia Partnership for Excellence in Education. She also served as the 2009-2010 chair of the executive committee of the Gulf-South Summit on Service-Learning and Civic Engagement through Higher Education and was the recipient of this organization’s 2011 Outstanding Service-Learning Practitioner Award. She has served on many university-wide committees such as the National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE) Steering Committee, the Quality Enhancement Plan Committee for UGA’s 2010 Southern Association of Colleges and Schools accreditation process, and co-chaired the working group for UGA’s application for the 2010 Carnegie Community Engagement Classification.
An active community member, she has chaired the board of the Athens Community Council on Aging, served on the LEAD Athens Steering Committee and the Athens Area Chamber of Commerce, and is past president of the Classic City Rotary Club. In 2011, she was selected as one of the Athens Banner-Herald’s 40 Under 40 community leaders. She previously served on the board of the Clarke County Mentor Program, the 2008-09 School Council for Classic City High School, and is a 2012 graduate of LEAD Athens.